COVID-19 has completely upended our daily lives, forcing businesses across the world to shift to online platforms. To stay clear of the virus, many office employees have had to work from home and use a variety of virtual tools instead of face-to-face meetings to keep businesses operating.
In the ‘new normal’, company leaders have also had to face new challenges in how they conduct business. The skills and practices that used work before the pandemic now need to be augmented and reshaped. As such, upskilling and reskilling have become major concerns for many organizations in order to keep up with how business is changing forever. So, here are a few ways you can do this:
When creating an upskilling or reskilling strategy, you should take into account the current business climate. For example, legacy marketing techniques for brick-and-mortar stores will be less effective while social distancing restrictions are in place. Consequently, entrepreneurs are training and hiring more digital content producers as they vie for customer attention online.
You can apply a similar strategy to your own business. To pinpoint the skill gaps in your organization, you can work with a business analyst to understand your organization’s needs, outline any issues, and find opportunities for improvement. Indeed, business analysts are currently some of the most in-demand careers in business administration, and for good reason. By going over the current market and industry data, they can provide you with meaningful insights and actionable solutions you can use to develop your workforce. It’s also a good idea to create an employee skills inventory and match what you have versus emerging business trends. This allows you to pinpoint which training programs you actually need to enrich your company’s skill pool.
As schools around the globe have shuttered because of the pandemic, the education sector has responded by implementing distance learning techniques facilitated by technology. From lessons in physical classrooms, students now learn online — and there’s no reason for businesses not to do the same.
Traditionally, employee onboarding and training was done via instructor-led or group-based sessions. However, remote working has opened up new modes of instructional content delivery, particularly using mobile applications. These tools let employees absorb the information at their own pace, or even go over the training sessions as many times as they want — all of which can lead to better knowledge retention.
Additionally, upskilling through such apps engages users better than the typical seminar with a PowerPoint presentation and Q&A portion. By utilizing multimedia content, community interaction, and customizing these training programs for apps, businesses can ensure optimum info acquisition for their employees while they upskill or reskill.
While some employees function better with a hands-off approach, a baseline level of engagement and checking up is still required to make sure everyone is on the same page. To that end, use community boards and platforms like Slack, which work great for delivering updates, troubleshooting problems, and generally encouraging interaction within the company to foster social learning.
To drive employee engagement, you can also gamify your training sessions and incorporate an entertainment element to them. After all, it’s no secret that competition — whether with yourself or with others — is a powerful motivator to get things done. Follow through on your strategy by creating specific key performance indicators to see how upskilling has impacted your workflow and sales. If necessary, arrange for follow-up training programs, depending on the results.
With the health crisis fast tracking digital transformation, upskilling and reskilling have become a requirement to stay afloat. Luckily, there are plenty of effective ways to do this digitally, thanks to the various tools and technologies businesses have at their disposal.
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